Taking photos of animals

butterfly You can find interesting animals almost everywhere you look. You might have a pet dog, cat, or goldfish. You can find many beautiful birds at your local park or at the seaside. You can try your hand at zoo photography and take pictures of lions, elephants, monkeys, penguins, butterflies, parrots and almost any other animal you can think of.

So what is the trick to photographing animals?

Most of the time, it is important to see the animal's face, and particularly its eyes. Faces are very important because we use them to understand how a person or animals feels and to tell two individuals apart.

Try to shoot pictures when the animal is doing something, for example playing or running or eating. A picture that captures a bit of action will often be more interesting.


Try to shoot pictures that capture the expression of the animal; for example if your cat is feeling sleepy, if the lion at the zoo roars in anger, or if a flock of birds are startled by an incoming dog.

border collie dog Be patient! Unfortunately animals rarely do what we want them to do. Great animal photography is all about patience.

If you are taking pictures of very small animals such as insects, get in as close as you can.

Just remember that some cameras are worse at taking pictures close up than others. If your camera has a macro setting remember to use it. Macro just means "close up", so with this setting your camera will be better at focusing on things that are very close to the lens.

by Simon James Allanach, edited by Alan Frost
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